Latest IAU definition of planet Stories

IAU Speaks Out Against Planet Naming Site Uwingu
2013-04-15 12:01:28

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online A few months ago, a new space website opened up its doors for the public to start selecting the names of other planets. Now, the International Astronomical Union (IAU) has stepped up and pointed out this isn't exactly the protocol for the scientific process of naming cosmic bodies. Over 800 planets have been detected outside the Solar System so far, and thousands more are still waiting to be confirmed. Recently, the website...

Image 1 - Citizen Scientists May Have Found New Planets
2011-09-22 04:05:00

   Since the online citizen science project Planet Hunters launched last December, 40,000 web users from around the world have been helping professional astronomers analyze the light from 150,000 stars in the hopes of discovering Earth-like planets orbiting around them. Users analyze real scientific data collected by NASA's Kepler mission, which has been searching for planets beyond our own solar system – called exoplanets – since its launch in March 2009. Now...

2009-08-02 20:08:31

Pluto's lowered celestial status will probably stick at an upcoming meeting of astronomers in Rio de Janeiro, an American astronomer predicted Sunday. Pluto was reduced from a full-fledged planet -- the ninth in the Earth's solar system -- to dwarf planet at a meeting of the International Astronomical Union three years ago in Prague, Czech Republic. The Houston Chronicle reported Stephen Maran, co-author of the recent book Pluto Confidential, says politics may keep the only planet discovered...

2006-09-01 15:30:00

By Andy Sullivan WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Hundreds of U.S. scientists have challenged a recent decision by an international astronomy group to strip Pluto of its planetary status with a petition rejecting its definition of what constitutes a planet. The astronomical insurrection shows that debate is likely to continue over the status of the icy rock at the edge of the solar system that was considered the ninth planet until a vote last week by the International Astronomical Union. Petition...

2006-08-24 15:47:31

By Donna Smith WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Pluto's lost status disappointed some schoolchildren and had space museum curators scrambling but in the words of one teenager, "It's one less planet to memorize." Quinn Huebner, 15, was visiting the Smithsonian Institution's National Air and Space Museum on Thursday when he and his family from Mazomanie, Wisconsin, learned international astronomers had decided Pluto was no longer a planet. His sister Grace, 11, also voiced relief. Had Pluto...

2006-08-24 08:36:10

PRAGUE (Reuters) - Scientists from around the world on Thursday approved a new definition of a planet, downgrading Pluto's status to leave just eight classical planets. After a heated debate, 2,500 scientists and astronomers voted at the International Astronomers Union General Assembly that Pluto, which has been called a planet since being discovered in 1930, would be put into a category of planets called "dwarf planets."

2006-08-19 15:05:00

PASADENA, Calif. -- Few planet hunters stand to gain as much as Michael Brown if our solar system balloons to 12 planets under a new definition. He's spotted more than a dozen objects that might qualify as planets. So why is he upset? "When I was a kid, planets were special," he said. "This definition takes the magic out of the solar system." It was Brown's discovery of an icy rock bigger than Pluto that helped lead astronomers to rethink their definition of what a planet is. But Brown...

2006-08-16 13:25:00

By Alan Crosby PRAGUE -- Learning the planets of our solar system is about to become more difficult for school children around the world. The International Astronomers Union (IAU) put forward a definition of a planet on Wednesday that will expand the number from nine to 12, and create different categories of planets in a nod to technological advances that allow astronomers to look deeper into space. In defining for the first time what exactly a planet is, a seven member committee of the IAU...

2006-08-16 13:27:18

By Alan Crosby PRAGUE (Reuters) - The question of whether Pluto is a real planet, hotly debated by scientists for decades, came to a head on Wednesday when the global astronomers' body proposed a definition of a planet that raises their number to 12 from nine. The definition set out by a committee of the International Astronomers Union (IAU) answers the key question: How small can a body be and still be called a planet? in a way that leaves Pluto's status intact -- but modified....

2005-08-01 08:01:18

By Gina Keating LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A California astronomer has discovered what he believes is the 10th planet in our solar system, a group of NASA-funded researchers said on Friday. The new planet, known as 2003UB313, has been identified as the most distant object ever detected orbiting the sun, California Institute of Technology astronomer Michael Brown said. Brown and colleagues Chad Trujillo and David Rabinowitz have submitted a name for the planet to the International...

Word of the Day
  • The hard inner (usually woody) layer of the pericarp of some fruits (as peaches or plums or cherries or olives) that contains the seed.
This word comes from the Greek 'endon,' in, within, plus the Greek 'kardia,' heart.